Snow, Sand, Mud, road…eat it!

The weekend of the 19th of February was marked as a big racing weekend with a very wide range of races planned!
Our Canadian athletes finally got the chance to unleash the legs after a good winter of training, race conditions were uncertain because of a snowstorm that passed by in the region and very windy weather! On the day of the race roads were slippery and conditions to run hard were not easy…it seemed! But when the tough gets going, the going gets tough for everybody. The men get separated from the boys when the weather conditions are hard, so it was up to them to show what they are made of. They solved this very nice with Corey running alone in the front towards the win and Allan and Andreas running on 2nd and 3rd.

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Corey ‘skating’ his way to the finishline and win his first race of 2017!

It was Andreas who was in 2nd till km 19 in the race and could push Allan to his limits. In the end Andreas suffered a bit from stitches in the side and Allan took 2nd, Andreas completed the podium on the 3rd spot! Starting the weekend with a clean sweep…that couldn’t be better!

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Clean sweep in tough conditions!

You never know how races will evolve, so it’s very important to go into a race with a clear, open mind. That’s what our athletes did today. What followed was a cascade of podium spots.
This morning it was the Crossduathlon of Jurbise (Wallonia, Belgium).
‘Deamon on the bike’ Tom was keen on this race, being the 2014 winner he loves this race. With the sunny weather of the last days, no mudrace but dry and fast. Not directly in his advantage. But like we said in advance ‘whether it’s dry or muddy, you need to be capable of influencing the race’, and that’s exactly what happened.

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A very ‘honest’ race course in Jurbise, if you’re not good enough…you’re done!

After a good run and a fast transition Tom quickly moved up towards Denis (Bel – finally 3rd), while at the end of the cyclingpart he got the leader (Tournant – Fra) in his sight. Tournant got first off the bike and first at the finishline, with a good 2nd run Tom got the result he earned and finished 2nd! This wasn’t the only podium in Jurbise, Wim who finished 4th overall could make a big gap with his concurrents in the masters race and wins in the masters race!

 

At noon it was time for a special event, the new Sandman Inferno Duathlon, 5k run -40K beachrace – 10K run. A tough and entertaining raceformat that would attract many athletes, our ‘beachboys and girls’ were keen on racing at their beach. With only 5K in the beginning, the start of the race would be quite explosive, and the legs got warm…

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Hans running towards 2nd place, one of the better Long distance AG runners off the bike!

Once on the bike it was Hans who turned on his engine and ‘ La Machine’ was on his way to get back Xterra Pro athlete Coddens (Bel). Easy said, not easy done. Of course this also is a good MTB-rider with Pro Xterra wins on his resume. La Machine succeeded and felt he was the strongest on the bike. With a few kilometers to go he dropped Coddens and tried (the impossible?). Hans was capable of doing a good 2nd run, but it was Coddens who was the fastest, so 2nd spot for Hans!

Not so much further it was Steven and Johan who were in battle for the podium in the masters race. Steven, who turns out to be a good duathlete and MTB’er, is discovering himself in these races and was able to beat some strong crossspecialists. 3rd Place for him, Johan 7th.

 

But with a 2nd and 3rd spot, something was still missing in Sandman…victory! So Inge pushed the pedals and seemed to be ‘hors category’ in the female race!

She’s getting stronger towards tri season and definitely already in a good shape, winning the Sand(Wo)man! Finishing top 20 overall says a lot about her skills, let’s hope the switch to the road and TTbike goes as planned!

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Inge leading the female race from start till finishline!

In Hofstade another offroad duathlon took place, short runs and a longer bikecourse definitely plays in the advantages of the more technical MTb’ers,  a few of our roadtri/duathletes got the honour to test those legs in Hofstade. And shape was found well, some athletes suffered with the difficulty of the bike course but as it’s good to boost your weaknesses they get the right impulses out of it! Congratulations to our athletes racing there today!

 

Today some of our cyclists already got the opportunity to race, next week season will be on for all! As it was the first race of the season we were not expecting any wins this weekend…but it was Svenne who almost decided differently. Going in an early breakaway he found himself in the position to win and was able to sprint for victory! Only a few cm could keep him away from this, he lost the win he won the 2nd place today!

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Svenne (Blue/Yellow) found himself in the breakaway in Haneffe – 2nd place today and a good entrance into the new season!

 

2017 started with a bomb, let’s have fun!

Train smart, perform better!

 

Jesse

Maze runners, the path to success!

The first weekend of september would be loaded with races and not the least!

3 world championships ( Ironman70.3 – ITU/Powerman Duathlon Long distance – Cycling Amateurs UCI) and many other important races!

Let’s begin with  the world championships races, in Australia Raphael and Sophie found themselves among the top of the triathlonworld. The racelocation was splendid and  that always gives wings!

Raphael had to start first and we were focussed on doing better than his place on the  world champs last year! He was in shape, ready! All went to plan, a very good swim and a fast bike…but then a card and a 5’penalty. This would be an expensive one..We asked Raphael how he could get this penalty and clearly he got blocked. He had no need to draft, because he prooved to ride this pace easily in former halfs! A pity, but he went through and with a very strong offbike run he finished in  4h19′ in Australia! Because of the highly densified level of this race the 5’penalty costs him a 16th-17th place! That would be even better than expected!

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Our athletes in Australia managed their races well can look back at a great adventure!

Sophie from her side needed just 1h longer than Raphael, and managed a solid race!The goal was to swim well, cycle below 3h and put down a 5’00/km run, we can say he managed all! Being part of the  world championships is an honour in IM(70.3) racing, only the  very best get this opportunity!

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On a World Championship the best come around, our athletes had the honour racing them!

 

 

A bit further in Australia, in Perth, our Canadian master cyclist Ambrose rode his  world  championships. With good legs he got closed in at an important moment and had to chase the head of the race. More was in it for him, but cycling is more than pushing the watts of course. Some good luck and being at the right place at the right time also makes part of it!

In Switzerland, Zofingen, the ITU/Powerman World championships duathlon took place! As we have an honour to defend with 3 AG world titles, 2 AG vice world champions and an 8th place in the 2012 PRO race (with a fulltime working amateur ;-)) we were focussed on this for months. Jan was ready, more than ready. All duathlons so far this season..he raced in the front. Knowing Zofingen has a 30K run in the end,  this is his race! He was keen on getting back there after a severe bikecrash last year! Already in the first run he placed himself just behind the profield. 18th he was coming out of T1. The 150K bikeride was hard, but he defended his position well and put the bike down in 25th position! The 30K run in the end would be tough and he  was moving up place by place! The race was  won by another Belgian (Odeyn) with a strong progressive race. A long Belgian tradition goes on in Zofingen!

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Jan becomes AG world champion duathlon, finishing 14th overall among the pro athletes!

Going deep till the finishline in this tough race made Jan lost conscience 15’after the  race, but after a good meal he’s already the old him again!

In the short distance race JanG got a 19th overall place and 2nd in the masters classification! All signs were good in advance and this is a nice confirmation of his  summer!

 

Except for the World Championships a few other international races were held, in  Xterra Denmark Joeri was keen on the AG podium and so he did. “A nice racecourse and 2nd in my AG, super satisfying to pick another slot for the Xterra worlds and to show I am worth it”

 

In Gerardmer (France) they had a classy field at the starting line, with Andi Boecherer (Ger) and Van Lierde (Bel) it would be a absolute triathlonstar to win! Boecherer was the strongest, Van Lierde 2nd! Behind that 2 of our athletes gave the best of themselves!

Sam did a good race, that totally fits into his Hawaii preparation, with I think his fastest swim ever there. On the  bike he simply was strong and on the run he kept moving up towards his final spot. 17th at the finishline and 2nd in his AG!

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Gerardmer is not an easy bikecourse, the irregularity in bikecourses demands a lot from athletes. It’s much harder to pace this right and not explode during the race.

GerardmerWattage Sam

Cai from her side did a very strong race and that resulted in her AGwin! After becoming 4th and 5th (AG) in Ironmanraces this season…now she takes it all.

 

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In Brugge, our ‘sub50 Jeroen’ won the swimrun. He experiences the use of training smart!

Svenne, 10times podium in the road cyclingraces this  season. Always just not winning kept fighting all season, believed in it…and yesterday he won! This morning he sent me a message :”Alles op alles” or “all on it”…well, today he won again! Svenne is no sprinter, and this makes it difficult to win. But on the tough race courses he’s  always in the main group, if he’s not in it…he closes the gap later! This is an athlete with an absolute positive spirit. The season he is riding is fantastic, and not done yet! More to come!

Our other cyclists had less luck this weekend, 2of them crashed (bad weather) and Anthony who was in the leadgroup of 10 in Luxemburg had a flat tyre and no immediate backup! On to the next race!

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There is NO other Svenne than this Svenne, giving it for 100% 2wins in a row for this rider!

And last but not  least Tom who became ‘The Beast 2016’,  in Lynmouth UK Tom was ready for his 2nd Half triathlon of this season! This time it was a race beyond tough. It was extreme! The THE BEAST TRIATHLON is a half triathlon with extreme bike and run courses. The run course for example has 800D+ in it! On Tom’s site  you will soon find more about the course! This race was the maingoal for Tom in this part of the season. Not knowing who the other athletes were it was difficult to predict the outcome! Earlier this week Tom let me know the percentages on the climbs would be very steep.

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With 324NP Tom could pace himself to the front of the field and save enough energy for the 800D+ run!

My answer was simple: “It cuts the crap”. And so it did, the strongest man in the races lasted in the end and Tom was capable of winning his first Half Triathlon! Only, because of the wild sea…there was no swim. So it became a duathlon, which turned into his advantage! 1big race to come for Tom within a few weeks. But now, coming home and take a few days of  active recovery. I think, he’ll need it 😉

Tom vandenbussche

Tom, turned from cyclist into duathlete, and last season into triathlete. With 3 Triathlonwins of which ‘The beast’ and a top 10  in Monts de Guéret…this has become a super season for him!

Oh yeah, Maze Runners…yesterday I looked at this movie and a group of people had 2 choices. Keep on living in a circle of complaining or getting out of it, moving forward, live and explore what’s out there  and not having to “what if..”. Today I thought about that movie again…;-) #TSPB

 

Ciao

 

Jesse

 

 

 

The heat became fire!

On friday and saturday our athletes performed already astonishing, I had that little feeling that on sunday our athletes wouldn’t perform less. And so it was!

Jan started his crosstriathlon early that day (Watrissart-France) ,in his first triseason it’s clear this discipline is something that will fit him as the best. A good technique, strong cyclist and fast off-bike runner as he is, he got 2nd overall! For Joeri the race ended with a broken chain and alternative training!

Jan G

The looks of a rockstar, but the legs of sportsstar, Jan on his first overall crosstri-podium!

In Viersel(Belgium) it was Tony who entered the densified field of the quarter triathlon. With specialists as Goetschouwers, Jammaer,…we knew the swim would be important on a totally flat racecourse with almost no turning…just pushing. Tony did a good swim, and moved up a lot on the bike followed by a top8 runsplit he managed 11th overall in the end!

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Former duathlete Tony gets 11th in a fast 1/4triathlon with a high level of athletes at the starting line.

In France Séb did the Castleseries Half Iron in Chantilly, this was a top off of a big trainingperiod towards the toughest Irondistancerace in Europe, the Evergreen Triathlon in and around Chamonix. Food for challengers!

A bit further away in France the Ironman athletes showed determination! Michael reached the finishline in this Ironman with a non-wetsuit ! But it was Alex, who astonished. Alex came with us after an Ironman Frankfurt where need more than 13h to get to the finisline!

1year later he realises a great effort with a magnificent swim and a bik and run in which he kept his spot in the overal field! One day Alex will swim a sub 50′ IMswim, not sure about this…but very sure!

Alex

Alex cuts off 2h30 of his Ironmanrace-time and now enters among the top15%, a big step forward!

6years I never would have thought I could be  celebrating 40 (!) wins with an athlete, today it became reality! Tom “deamon on  the bike” Vandenbussche  won the individual time  trial in Torhout and is having a supersummer! 2wins in 1 weekend is double champagne for breakfast tomorrow!  Super proud to work with this athlete, who came from far and started stepping up the podium and winning as soon as we focussed on the positive side in an athlete. That’s still my number 1 approach to athletes!

Late in the afternoon it was time for our Canadian athletes to go into the 70.3 triathlon in Maine, USA! Heather, Corey and Andreas were very motivated towards this race.

For Heather this race is her last step up towards the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii! Coming out of the water with migraine she managed the bike but then wisely skipped the run, being first in her AG. A good recovery now and then only the big Island waiting!

Corey and Andreas went into this race quite different, this was their main objective this summer. Corey was  not far behind on the swim and managing a 280NP ride he came off the bike within a position that was possible to reach the  podium. This must have motivated him to get off the bike fast and set the best runsplit only 33″away from 2nd position at the finisline! I repeat, if you can’t run off the bike..you can’t win!

Andreas from his part definitely did his best ever triathlon. You could say this was his breakthrough race, finishing 7th overall in Maine! Andreas realised a fast bikesplit and moved up even more places than Corey. Question was, what could he do on the run? Well, he smashed it…running  4th running split and entering top 10 on place #7!

Next week we have 3 World Championships,

with the Ironman70.3 WC in Australia, Raph and Sophie are at location already. The race will be very fast and the level densified.

There is also the World Championships cycling for amateurs with Ambrose, also in Australia and the World championships duathlon in Switzerland with Jan!

 

Train smart, perform better!

 

Jesse

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ironman Frankfurt 2016, again…Hammer on the block!

What a day again!
Tom his 9th place in Halftriman des Monts de Guéret (France) was just a good sign for the Mainova IRONMAN European Championship Frankfurt (Germany) 2016 !
1900m swim, a hilly bikecours and 21K trailrunning was on his menu. It seemed this game fitted him well past sunday!
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Great performance of Tom entering the top10 in this classy field in his first half Iron, with Gaspariau 1st and Leboucher 2nd!

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Sometimes the bikecourse can be very simple, up and down…and again! Tom needed to push 318watt NP to get this performance!

A small roundup!
Dave finishes 6th in his AG in 9h00 and…and he can take a slot for Hawaii! Only…that same period he becomes father, so a bit of doubt taking the slot!
Adrian finishes FINALLY in an Ironman and after a steady race he ran into the finishline in 9h34′!
Jeroen in his first Ironman swam 49minutes finished just behind Adrian sub 10h!
Sem,Peter and PJ had a dream…finishing sub11hours! Their day went just fine, they knew the race course from last year. But being much faster than last year they didn’t spend as much time on it!
PJ en Sem
Sem and Peter ran together the last kilometers, nice clash in the end!
Peter (10h25), Sem (10h27) and PJ (10h51, 1h45′ faster than last year) RESPECT!
And then, our special guest from Roumania, Ciprian. Last year more than 13hours of racing, this year in at 11h05! Who said u can’t combine Marathon des Sables with an Ironman!
In Geraardsbergen (on ‘De Muur’) the first triathlon was held, Inge won in the masters category and became 6th overall. In the long distance race some bad luck with broken gear for Toon. But also good luck for our athletes finishing with a smile and getting experience on the longer bike courses!
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In Geraardsbergen: The famous ‘Muur’ was the keyclimb in this  race!

Happy coach, happy athletes….they made this a day!
Train smart, perform better!
Jesse

The extreme character of triathlon, athletes love racing hard…but above all, they love facing their own limits and dealing with them

It was october 2014 when we were planning one of our athletes’ macrocycle.

Like always we try to work from an athlete’s positive points, and not from his weaknesses. Let that be the reason why wanted a tough race, a race where men  would be seperated from the little boys by the difficulty of the race course and conditions.

Looking for that challenge made us bump in to this little movie of the 2014 Snowman, Wales.

The Snowdon triathlon would be more than just a triathlon, an 11degreesC swim, followed by a 85km  hard bikecourse on the bike and an even more challenging trailrun would make this a real enduranceparty. After his journalist World Title in Time Trial 1 week before, we knew our peak was on  the spot!

Tom running up and around de Snowdon Hills, chasing his 3rd spot is this tricky triathlon!

Tom running up and around de Snowdon Hills, chasing the 3rd spot in this tricky triathlon!

Finishing 3rd in his triathlonmaingoal of 2015 was just a splendid performance for this ' deamon on the bike'

Finishing 3rd in his triathlonmaingoal of 2015 was just a splendid performance for this ‘ deamon on the bike’

Coming back on the title, some athletes don’t longer want to face the growing mass in LDtriathlons and the ‘drafting’ coming with that. For that reason the man-to-man battles of extreme triathlons are getting more popular.

Every athlete needs a different approach, a personal approach leads to topresults. Tom his focus was on this period where he became World Champion Time Trial for Journalists (Belgium) and 3rd in the Snowman Triathlon (Wales), before this last 3months we had a totally different HRgraph.

Every athlete needs a different approach, a personal approach leads to topresults. Tom his focus was on this period in which he became World Champion Time Trial for Journalists (Belgium) and 3rd in the Snowman Triathlon (Wales), before these last 3months we had a totally different HRgraph.

What can we say more about last 28days before the race, a building shape and reduction in fatigue was just 'the hammer on the block'

What can we say more aboutthe  last 28days before the race, a building shape and reduction in fatigue was just ‘the hammer on the block’

A surprising weekend and good vibes for our athletes, thinking positively results in great results!

Coaching High performance athletes gives  you busy days, a cellphone is at least that one device you definitely need…but what happens on a day on which you turn it out because you  make a trip…well this happens:

– You come home and put on the phone, suddenly it keeps on vibrating with messages full of smileys and thumbs up!

This really makes my day, the first phone I got was from Raphael who was keen on performing in Halluin (France – Nord). We gave Raph some decompressiontime after his selection for the World Championships Ironman70.3 in Zell Am See (Austria). In France Raph did a correct race, he finished 7th on a Olympic Distance race (1,5K Swim-40K non-drafting bike-10Krun). The race was won by Belgian Rinus Holvoet before Emmanuel Renard (Gravelines Triathlon…offcourse!) A happy Raph who was between the guys we pointed out the be with.

Raphael did an OD race just 2 weeks after his Ironman70.3 at Kraichgau and he could be where he intended to be!

Raphael did an OD race just 2 weeks after his Ironman70.3 at Kraichgau and he could be where he intended to be!

Next message was from Kristof, cyclist and National champion with the ‘bondes sauvages’ Kristof has a very loaded period behind him and made his ‘click’ in the head with the focus on a good summer…last 2weeks the good feeling was coming back…and we know he can win a sprint…but not today, he took the more difficult way and escaped the peloton. In a sprint with 2 he took the win!

Kristof could take his 2nd win of the season and will be ready for a good summer of racing!

Kristof could take his 2nd win of the season and will be ready for a good summer of racing!

Next message from Joeri: “Yes yes,Gagné, what a good day!”, first I thought he was joking, but quickly I took him for serious. Joeri did it, this win is something he is looking for for a long time! Joeri won in France (Lac des vieilles Forges – Ardennes Francais) on very difficult track, but the more difficult and selective the better for him! Joeri is one of our athletes who we work with for the 5th consecutive Joeri, every year he makes his step and now he is  where he has to be…battling in the front of his discipline on the national races, great performance for this young athlete!

Fantastic, Joeri wins Offroadtriathlon Lac des vieilles Forges, for a nature fanatic...the most beautifull battlescene!

Fantastic, Joeri wins Offroadtriathlon Lac des vieilles Forges, for a nature fanatic…the most beautifull battlescene!

Give him some singletracks and you can't stop him!

Give him some singletracks and you can’t stop him!

Next call was the ‘HAHA, wuk peisjdje call’ of Tom, Tom had some serious things going on in his body, if you want to know what…here it is Tom’s site

You can imagine we doubted about competition for the 2015 season, but training we kept doing…sometimes it was with a down…sometimes a small up. But with patience and motivation Tom came back. In his first race last week, his engine needed to be topped a bit…but overall he was simply strong already. Tom is one of those athletes which we work with for a long time already, we know how the head and body reacts…we know he’s all dedication and an example for other athletes. No concurrent will not like the coming back of Tom…

The thing is…when Tom calls me and he says ‘Haha, wuk peisjdje’ I know he won or at least had a good day, in Dreikirchen (Germany) he did a triathlon (300-20-5)…we will not say it’s the biggest race…but it definitely was a race made for him. With a difficult biketrack and slightly exhausted legs for the run. Not only the win was there, but also the numbers on the bike and in the run were back in town…

Tom on his collector's item Cervelo P2 last week ;-) This week, he was upgraded a bit with a rotor cranck

Tom on his collector’s item Cervelo P2 last week 😉 This week, he was upgraded a bit with a rotor cranck

If you work Smart before your racingperiod...you can hold on quite a time to a good shape...balance, a smart word! This shows how Tom his body was reacting to load.

If you work Smart before your racingperiod…you can hold on quite a time to a good shape…balance, a smart word! This shows how Tom his body was reacting to load untill raceday

Team spirit Team on the roll!